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Pumpkin Hummus Toasts with Zaatar

Pumpkin Hummus Toasts with Zaatar

These toasts make a great addition to any appetizer spread, or a simple and satisfying lunch when served with a leafy salad, like a ?vegan caesar or ?kale salad. You could even make this hummus as a meal prep for a week’s worth of plant-powered sandwiches. Just add some leafy greens and maybe a slice of vegan cheeze! 

Assuming you have salt and oil in the pantry, you need just 10 ingredients to make this yummy appetizer and just 20 minutes of hands-on prep:

Silver Hills Sprouted Grain Bread: my favourite sliced bread, using sprouted grain bread creates a flavourful and hearty base that will pair beautifully with the hummus! Plus, it’s high in fibre and plant-based protein to make this yummy snack even more nutrient-dense. 

Pumpkin: any type of pumpkin you have on hand will work, although the level of sweetness will vary. I’ve tested this recipe with sugar pumpkin and acorn squash and both were delish! 

Chickpeas: you can use either canned or home-cooked chickpeas for this recipe. Out of chickpeas? Try white beans! 

Tahini: earthy, creamy and packed with minerals, tahini is a staple in my plant-based kitchen.

Garlic: to mellow and coax out their sweetness, you’re going to roast garlic cloves right on the pan with pumpkin. So simple! 

Cumin + Za’atar: these additions add a rich flavour to the hummus so it’s anything but basic.

Lemon juice: freshly squeezed is the only way to go here. one lemon ought to do it.

Pumpkin seeds: I love pumpkin seeds for their crunch and their high content of immune + gut-supporting zinc, but you could use any nut or seed you have on hand.

What is Za'atar?

Za’atar is an herb blend that is native to the Mediterranean region of the Middle East, and is widely used in Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Israel and Palestine. In fact, za’atar refers to the wild thyme that is the base for the blend. It’s pretty easy to find in urban supermarkets with an international section or in a Mediterranean or Middle Eastern food market. But if you can’t find it, you can also make it.

Just combine 1 tablespoon each of oregano, sesame seeds and sumac with 1 ½ teaspoons of thyme and ½ teaspoon of salt in a jar and give it a shake! 

Ingredients:
  • 6 slices Silver Hills Bakery Sprouted Grain Bread, I used Squirrely bread 
  • 1 pound (225 g) pumpkin, about one small pumpkin 
  • 4 cloves garlic, in skin 
  • 4 tablespoons (30 mL) avocado oil, divided 
  • 1 14 ounce (398 mL) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained or 1 ½ cup cooked chickpeas 
  • ¼ cup (60 mL) tahini 
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) freshly squeezed lemon juice 
  • ¾ teaspoon (3 mL) salt, plus more for seasoning 
  • ¼ teaspoon (1 mL) cumin 
  • pinch of chile flakes, optional 
  • maple syrup, optional to taste 

Makes 12 servings

Instructions:
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit (220 C) and prepare a rimmed baking sheet with parchment. Set aside.
  2. Peel and remove seeds from pumpkin. Slice into 1 inch (2.5 cm) slices. Place pumpkin and garlic cloves on baking sheet. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons (30 mL) oil and sprinkle with salt. Roast for 25-35 minutes, flip halfway, until golden brown and soft. Time will vary depending on type of pumpkin you use. Watch garlic after 15 minutes so it doesn’t burn.
  3. Meanwhile, toast bread and cut it in half diagonally. Set aside.
  4. Place pumpkin into food processor. Carefully squeeze garlic out of skin into the food processor. Then add chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, remaining 2 tablespoons oil, salt, cumin and chile flakes if using. Puree until silky smooth. Taste, and add 1-2 teaspoons of maple syrup for sweetness if you wish, or adjust salt.
  5. Top toast generously with hummus and place on a board or platter. Sprinkle with za’atar and pumpkin seeds and serve. 
Tips:
  • This hummus will keep well for 4-5 days in the fridge, so you can definitely make this ahead of time. Or, if making the hummus as meal prep item, just stir 1-2 teaspoons of za’atar right into the hummus. 

Desiree Nielsen is a registered dietitian, author and host based in Vancouver, British Columbia. She runs a nutrition consulting practice with a focus on inflammation, digestion and plant-centred diets. Desiree is the author of a book on anti-inflammatory nutrition called Un-Junk Your Diet: How to shop, cook and eat to fight inflammation and feel better, forever and her new cookbook, Eat More Plants: 100 Anti-inflammatory Plant-centred Recipes for Vibrant Living is a #1 National Bestseller.